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God's Enduring Love and Authority

Today we come to Psalm 136:13-26, which continues yesterday’s focus and repetition of God’s “love [that] endures forever.” Here again, we see that the focus is on God’s mighty acts for Israel as evidence that His love for His people “endures.” Repetition is a literary device intended to teach us to remember, and in this Psalm, God uses this device 26 times to remind us not to forget His love. However, in verse 23, we also read that God “remembered us in our low estate.” God wants us to remember because “He remembers.” What would our “estate” be like if God were forgetful – as we are? The Psalm concludes at verse 26 by stating, “Give thanks to the God of heaven” because “His love endures forever.” God’s remembrance for the needs of His people is an eternal expression which arises out of His enduring love. He will not forget us. Thank God that He loves and remembers us “forever!”

In 1 John 2:12-27, the apostle emphasizes our assurance in Christ Jesus. We are forgiven, and John wants us to know that with certainty – “because we know the Father” (verses 13-14). Knowing about God is not the same as knowing God. Anything that separates us from knowing God personally is of this world and a barrier to our salvation. Such a barrier prevents us from knowing the Father intimately (verse 15). “Doing the will of God” is the product and the evidence of knowing Him (verse 17), and it results in life everlasting. Here, John warns us of the dangers of “many antichrists.” Their spirit produces the “lie and the denial that Jesus is the Christ,” and it constitutes the identifying mark of those who do not know God. How could they know Him if they deny His Son? Again, John says that eternal life comes to those who “acknowledge the Son” (verse 23), because – through this recognition – they demonstrate that they know God, Who is able to keep us (verse 24).

In Daniel 7-8:14, we read about Daniel’s visions of world empires – future to him – but now history for us. These visions include vivid pictures of “four great beasts,” a description of the “Ancient of Days and His court,” and the coming of “the Son of Man,” – followed by an angelic interpretation of these visions (7:3-27). In Dan 8:1-14, we see another vision – in this one, a ram and a goat. The events of this vision relate to a time when the “daily sacrifice” would be taken away, the sanctuary desecrated, and the “LORD’s people given over” to “the rebellion that causes desolation,” and truth would be “thrown to the ground” (verses 9-12). These descriptions fit into the historical time frame which was fulfilled when Antiochus IV Epiphanies desecrated the Jewish temple in 168 BC. Antiochus and his historical persecutions also foreshadow the future desolations by the Antichrist in the coming tribulation. Today’s Scriptures are excellent examples of God’s control over men, nations, and events, and they reveal His enduring authority and power, for which we should “give thanks and praise” to Him – and to Him alone.

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